This round we take on Penrith who are having a good season and running third in the Club Championship which they won last season. After four losses last week we are struggling in 14th, exactly 200 points behind the Panthers who are on 392. Plenty of cricket left this season of course but we need to get a wriggle on if we are going to compete at the serious end. Across the grades we have 36 wins over Penrith from 76 matches over 15 years with one tie, 10 draws and 29 losses.

 

Preview Round 5 v Penrith & Round 2 PGs

This round we take on Penrith who are having a good season and running third in the Club Championship which they won last season. After four losses last week we are struggling in 14th, exactly 200 points behind the Panthers who are on 392. Plenty of cricket left this season of course but we need to get a wriggle on if we are going to compete at the serious end. Across the grades we have 36 wins over Penrith from 76 matches over 15 years with one tie, 10 draws and 29 losses.

Last round against Blacktown saw a number of changes in our record books. Here’s the list:

  • Anthony Sams and Alex Kemp put on 254 for the first wicket. This broke the 1st Grade record of 165* held jointly by Joseph Hill and Paul Toole v Gordon in 2002-03 and Rory Burns and Nicholas Stapleton playing Bankstown at Bankstown Oval in 2013-14. It also broke the club record of 235 set by Angus Stewart and Troy Brewster v Mosman in 3rd Grade in 2008-09.
  • In the overall history of the club, the 254 1st wicket partnership was the highest since the opening bats for the old Marrickville club put on 278 against Cumberland at Marrickville Oval on 20 October 1928—just on 88 years ago!
  • 1st Grade chased 9-373 scoring 5-378. This was the highest score achieved by any team in the club to win when chasing runs. The previous best was against Gordon at Chatswood Oval in 2009-10 when the side posted 3-357 to chase down 9-354 declared after Eddie Otto (163) and John McLoughlin (157*) had put on a partnership of 293 for the second wicket.
  • Corey Graham (94) and Jaya Murdita (31) in 4th Grade put on 126 in 67 minutes for the seventh wicket taking the score from 6-77 to 203 which broke the previous record of 115 established by Nicholas Stapleton and Matt Hilder against St George in 2010-11.
  • Karl Schubert became the first lower grade wicketkeeper to pass 200 dismissals when he caught 3 in 3rd Grade and became only the second player in the club behind 1st Grade’s Anthony Sams to achieve that milestone.
  • Both 3rd and 4th Grade lost to Blacktown for the first time in our 16 years history.
  • This has been the first season that 2nd Grade has lost the first 4 matches.

1st GRADE is at Petersham: This is an important clash as both teams are on 18 points with us in 5th place and the Panthers 7th on quotient. Last year they beat us on this ground by 2 runs –227 to 225—which cost us a place in the finals. In fact they gave us a hiding last year winning in all 5 grades!! A whitewash! We need to repay the “favour” this round.

Our batting this season has been phenomenal totalling 1,419 in four innings—147 better than next best Hawkesbury. On the other hand we have conceded 1,299 runs, the most in the comp. and 134 more than next best Parramatta. Anthony Sams scored an amazing 447 runs at 111.75 before the end of October! With his T20 runs he has totalled 482. Many players don’t score that in a season. Congrats to Daniel Sams who brought up 150 wickets in 1st Grade for the club last week. Adam Semple, who couldn’t get a hit last Saturday, passed the 4,500 1st Grade runs milestone in the Twenty20 matches last Sunday. We have the advantage historically having won 9 times to the Panthers 5 but our last win against them was four years ago in a T20 match. Fast bowler Greg West, who twisted an ankle in the T20 warm-up last Sunday is out this round. Matt Critchley the UK leg-spinning all-rounder who debuted in 1st Grade last week retains his place.

2nd GRADE is at Howell Oval, Penrith: An amazing game last week being a battle of 10th wicket partnerships. Blacktown’s last two made 72 while ours made 66. Penrith won last week defeating Manly and beat Nth Sydney the match before. They lost to Parramatta and Uni. NSW the first two. While we are yet to register a point the vibes are good for this round. Penrith hold a 8:5 win margin over us. Pace bowler Pat Magann is out this round.

3rd GRADE plays at Coogee: There is a bit of incentive to win this round as Penrith have won 4 from 4 and lead the comp. Nothing like knocking over the tearaways! We have won 6 to their 5 over the years with the match in 2014-15 tied when both teams scored 265. Sam Wood had the last man lbw on the last ball with the scores equal on that occasion. Corey Graham, after his great 96 last week, comes into the side.

4th GRADE is at Bill Ball Oval, St Mary’s: Penrith have had 3 wins and a draw this season and we have won 2 so this is an important clash. We have been the victors over the years winning 8 times to their 4. Our last win over them was two seasons ago at Petersham when we made 223 to their 190. Time to pounce on a panther!

5th GRADE plays at Kensington: It’s been pretty well “Even Stevens” over the years with us winning 8 to their 7 with 3 draws. But like their 3rd Grade brothers they have won 4 from 4 so far and lead the comp. They have scored most runs and have taken most wickets this season so they’ll be a hard nut to crack. But crack them we must if we want to be a force by finals time. We are 10th.

Poidevin-Gray under 21 competition: This Sunday at 10 am we take on Gordon at Petersham Oval in round 2. First round we went down to Penrith at Howell so we need a win here to get our show on the road. We have a great young side under the captaincy of James Psarakis and there is no reason why they can’t take home the trophy. Gordon lost to Manly in the first round so we are level-pegging on the points ladder. There have only ever been 5 PG games between the clubs with Gordon leading 3 wins to 2. Gordon are leading the Club Championship so there is a double incentive to knock them over. Points in this comp. count in the Club Championship.

International Friendly Match: Next WEDNESDAY at 3 pm at Coogee, We take on a touring Pakistan team—the Lahore Qalandars—for the BEASTWEAR INTERNATIONAL T20 CUP. Should be plenty of excitement in this mid-week cricket T20 Big Bash. Why not get yourself down there and join in the fun! Most of our 1st XI and a number of our promising youngsters will be on show. A great game is assured.

Metropolitan Cup from Jeremy Jastrzab: Both Metro sides fought hard for their respective results last week, where the lessons learned should put them in good stead for the rest of the season. Green went down to the defending champions by a narrow margin but favourable results should be just around the corner. They’re back home at Snape Park against the bottom placed Georges River. The only Shires side in the comp, even the Shires 1sts recruits from recent weeks haven’t helped, so the Greens should fancy their chances to get back on the winner’s board. Gold hit the road to Whalan, otherwise known as “Paradise on Earth” to absolutely nobody. Fresh off a big but hard-fought win against arch rival Jay Patel (and his revolving door squad), the Golds welcome back big skip John Stewart and budding paceman Mitchell O’Loughlin to the team. They’ll be looking to consolidate their top 4 spot.

Lyall Gardner

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